I have been a designer in the Gannett Des Moines Design Studio since the studio's launch in August 2011 and currently design daily features sections and special sections for the Lafayette (La.) Daily Advertiser and the Monroe (La.) News-Star. My title is "Designer III," though I typically refer to myself as a journalist since I still do plenty of headline writing and copy editing.
Before landing in the features department I designed sports pages and special sections for the Des Moines Register and a handful of other daily Midwest newspapers and served as the lead designer for the Green Bay Press-Gazette's gameday Packers section in 2012.
Prior to that I was a designer and copy editor with The Des Moines Register since 2004. I've designed anything from award-winning Iowa Hawkeye football sections to little league baseball features to heartwarming and heartbreaking profiles to small-town music and food festivals. In between I've written hundreds of cover headlines, helped break national news and have landed a handful of bylines and ESPN mentions.
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We place the ads through out the different publications and paginate the classified sections for the register and iowa city. I have basically worked in every department for a newspaper and this is the last one for me to get my hands in. We are really middle men between advertising and the newsroom and the press. It has been a little more complicated than I thought it would be because filling the newsroom column request with the amount of ads we have for the day always seems basically impossible. My last paper, working in the newsroom, we worked with whatever space was giving to us by our pagination department. Working in this department gives me a better understanding of how the paper comes together and i think in turn it will make me a better designer.
I started in the pagination department in July. We are on the 6th floor but next week will be on the 7th. I was looking forward to an opportunity to apply to be a designer one day but now with the "regional design hubs" who knows. If there is ever an opportunity to help design I would love the chance.